Peter's Blog

Iberianspices spicesiberia

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Herbs and Spices and lots to keep me busy

A long time ago Gordon Ramsey was cooking some pork and he put a lot of Cloves into the top of the pork. I searched as best i could but i couldn't find  any Cloves and with not being able to get Juniper berries i was fed up not being able to do as i wanted.

After lots of research i found i could get Spices delivered here to me in Portugal. By having what i wanted posted to me from the UK was very expensive so what as the answer. I had been cooking for myself for a couple of years now but i wanted to do more.

Being a retailer for most of my working life i decided to start to sell Herbs and Spices and that was the start of a new journey in my new life.

First i had to find a supplier in the UK and that took me quite a while. You would expect that in these difficult times companies would be quick to reply to get an increase in trade. Only one company was quick to reply and this company was ot an Asian company like the other six i had contacted. all six where either slow to reply or would not let me use a courier of my choice. Being an ex retailer i know what i wanted in service and only one company meet all i wanted.

My first order was for about 80 kilo of Herbs and Spices and by using my courier i paid less than £30 for 30 kilo and they use  UPS for there deliveries.For details of the courier see below.

After the first delivery i had the task of then packing into various pack sizes, Labels, the rear label had to be in Portuguese etc. So i needed to get bags sent from Liverpool as i have family who could get them and send them to me. Then i needed scales and a heat bag sealer.

After weeks of work reweighing, packing and translating labels all was done and it was soon time for my first market at Miranda Do Corvo market. I arrived at the market at almost 7am only to find almost no place for me. A place had been kept for someone who hadn't turned up so i was lucky to get that spot and it was a good one to have and for the next four months i have had that spot.

The Portuguese who sell at the market arrive at about midnight and mark out there place and put out there stuff and then sleep in there vans. I was told that to get the spot you want you need to be there at 4/5am, so that's what i have been doing. To arrive at 5am and then wait till 9.30/10am before people arrive seems a big waste to me but i just put up my tresles and then try and rest in my car.

I have big plastic trays with all my products in so laying things out is so easy and only takes about 5 minutes and i am ready to start selling. Sales have been very good and so many people are amazed at the selection i have and the other stall with about a dozen types of spice and in little boxes now turn there stall so i can't see them it may be because there sales are down or are now nil.

More about the website and a retail outlet later.

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